Theater curtain to rise again at the Memorial Hall Theatre on - WFLA News Channel 8

Theater curtain to rise again at the Memorial Hall Theatre on the VA campus

Posted: Updated:
  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • April Mugshots

    April Mugshots

    Tuesday, April 22 2014 2:42 PM EDT2014-04-22 18:42:32 GMT
    Thomas Allen WinstonThomas Allen Winston
    The following are mugshots and charges of individuals arrested between April 1-4 by the Sullivan County Sheriff's Office.
    The following are mugshots and charges of individuals arrested between April 1-4 by the Sullivan County Sheriff's Office.
  • Mom bites off dog's ear to save daughter during attack

    Mom bites off dog's ear to save daughter during attack

    Tuesday, April 22 2014 2:49 PM EDT2014-04-22 18:49:19 GMT
    Image from CNN/KHOU-TVImage from CNN/KHOU-TV
    In a backyard in Alvin, swings a very lucky girl. Her name is Mackenzi Plass, or Kenzi for short, and she survived a dog attack and has undergone several surgeries."She'll be two and a half in May," said her very proud mother Chelsi Camp. "She's doing great. You wouldn't know it if you couldn't see."Mackenzi has scars on her face after the ordeal just weeks ago that put her mother's animal instincts to the test."You do whatever you can," said Camp. "I don't have physical strength at my side."...
    In a backyard in Alvin, swings a very lucky girl. Her name is Mackenzi Plass, or Kenzi for short, and she survived a dog attack and has undergone several surgeries."She'll be two and a half in May," said her very proud mother Chelsi Camp. "She's doing great. You wouldn't know it if you couldn't see."Mackenzi has scars on her face after the ordeal just weeks ago that put her mother's animal instincts to the test."You do whatever you can," said Camp. "I don't have physical strength at my side."...
  • Greene Co. deputies arrest 11 people reportedly involved in drug activity, burglary

    Greene Co. deputies arrest 11 people reportedly involved in drug activity, burglary

    Tuesday, April 22 2014 11:25 AM EDT2014-04-22 15:25:46 GMT
    Sharon DaleSharon Dale
    The Greene County Sheriff’s Department arrested 11 people Saturday morning through Monday afternoon, who were reportedly involved in illegal drug activity and a residential burglary.
    The Greene County Sheriff’s Department arrested 11 people Saturday morning through Monday afternoon, who were reportedly involved in illegal drug activity and a residential burglary.
Johnson City, TN -

The Memorial Hall Theatre on the Veterans Affairs campus in Johnson City was a building of marvel when first built in 1904, but flash forward almost 110 years and age has taken it's toll on the theatre.

"Currently we have it closed because we want to make some upgrades to the building," said Kevin Milligan, Chief Engineer at the VA center.

The fire alarms and sprinkler systems are out of date, the building does not comply with American Disability Association codes, and water damage over the years have left it almost unusable.  Despite all of that, the overall factor in why the theatre is closed is funding.

"Because this is a different historical asset that is not typical for a VA hospital, we can't really use VA medical funds to do the repairs," said Millligan.

A year ago the entire VA campus became a National Historic Landmark promoting a push to rejuvenate the theatre.

"We have different opportunities to go look at grants and things associated with historic assets now," said Milligan.

Milligan says the VA is currently working with architects and designers to determine the cost to update the theatre.  Milligan says the number one goal is to update the theatre without affecting the original historic design.

"It's right here in the city, its a beautiful spot and we would love to use it," said Joann Hodge, owner of Studio Dance.

Hodge says her studio used to perform recitals at Memorial Hall Theatre until it was closed to the public.

"The last recital or show that I held there was probably about two years ago in the fall," said Hodge.

Hodge says now it's difficult for her to find a place for her student performances.

"The local schools are not real easy to deal with for dancing schools," said Hodge.

Hodge says the only other facilities that her studio could perform in are at ETSU which are just as hard to book.

"It doesn't leave me a whole lot of options.  Right now I hold my recitals at Unicoi County High School.  I mean it's been here, it's standing, it just needs a little bit of help. you know why cant we use it?" said Hodge.

Officials at the VA say it will take a year to 18 months to update the theatre.  Hodge says she hopes that's true, so lights can once again shine center stage on her dancers.

Powered by WorldNow

200 South Parker Street, Tampa, FL 33606

Telephone: 813.228.8888
Fax: 813.225.2770
Email: news@wfla.com

Can’t find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.